Kukla's Korner Hockey
TSN reporting Toronto’s Wade Belak to the Florida Panthers for a 5th Round pick, 2008 draft.
Update 11:19am ET: TSN link
from Darren Dreger of TSN,
Will he retire?
It’s possible, however what’s more likely is the 37-year-old will move at his own pace, so we shouldn’t be surprised if he steals a page from the playbook Anaheim’s Scott Niedermayer and Teemu Selanne used last season.
Sundin will sit comfortably on his dock in Sweden, wait for the flurry of offers to rush in, shelve them for a couple of more months before seriously considering his future.
added 11:53pm, from Adam Proteau of the Hockey News,
For now, let’s leave it at this: if Sundin chooses not to retire from the NHL this summer, it’s fair to assume he’ll only want to return to the Maple Leafs organization he obviously loves so dearly.
Should that turn out to be the case, and I’m the lucky so-and-so who replaces Cliff Fletcher as Toronto’s GM, my first contract offer to the captain comes in no higher than $1.7 million, the same amount Sundin’s dressing room neighbor Alex Steen just signed for.
from On the Islanders Beat at Newsday,
A deal sending McCabe to the Islanders remains a longshot at this point, but if Fletcher yields his first-round pick, it could become a real possibility.
from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail,
The next thing to do is clear the roster and open cap space so the next general manager of the Maple Leafs has a fighting chance to rebuild. Right now, the Leafs have $43.3-million (all currency U.S.) committed in salaries to 18 players next season. Most of the expensive ones are not pulling their weight.
Fletcher’s only alternative is to put the worst offenders on waivers and, when no other NHL team claims them, send them to the Toronto Marlies farm team or elsewhere. That would take their salaries off the cap.
His targets could include Jason Blake, Darcy Tucker, Pavel Kubina, Mark Bell and Andrew Raycroft. That represents a potential trim of $16.2-million from next season’s salary cap.
added 6:59am, from Rosie DiManno of the Toronto Star,
This is an organization without class and without conscience. Was a time that could be attributed to the deranged persona of Harold Ballard, a bully and misanthrope who abused staff, shamed players and held fans in contempt. But at least there was a face to put to the bungle and a desk where the buck stopped.
If you were to call the Leafs’ front office today and ask to speak with the person in charge, who in the world might that be? It’s a board of directors accountable to no one except shareholders and immune from scandal.
A few years back, the Leafs announced things were going to be done different. Alumni were welcomed back, the diaspora of beloved ex-Leafs embraced, vows of integrity expressed. In practice, little has changed. It remains a franchise without a soul, for all its iconic stature, thoughtless and disloyal.
from Darren Dreger of TSN,
Maple Leafs captain Mats Sundin is staying put….
“I have carefully considered the team’s request that I waive my no-trade clause,” Sundin stated. “I have always believed I would finish my career as a Toronto Maple Leaf so the actual request was still a very difficult one for me to contemplate.”
Folks, we are going to hear rumors and things like from a friend of a friend type thing, so get used to it. It is up to you to decide what is true and what isn’t and a few suggestions. If it walks like a duck, talks like a duck, it is a duck!
Spector will be a busy man with stuff like this…
TSN: During the first intermission of today’s Sharks-Penguins game, Darren Dreger and John Ferguson Jr reported the following:
- Nothing new to report on Mats Sundin’s status, other than Sundin personally contacted Ferguson today and denied a report in Sunday’s Toronto Star that claimed the Leafs captain told a friend it wasn’t his responsibility to fix Ferguson’s mistakes. JFJ claims Sundin was quite upset about the story.
read more of Spector…
from Mike Zeisberger of the Toronto Sun,
...But before all those critics gleefully start putting together their “Bon Voyage Bryan” placards in the hopes of his eventual departure, he had a strong message for the fans when he emerged from the dressing room after the Maple Leafs’ 3-1 victory over the Atlanta Thrashers last night.
“I want to stay. I signed here and chose to stay here because this is where I want to be. I think there would be nothing better than to bring a championship to this city,” he said.
“There are no guarantees, but I don’t want to move. My wife is seven months pregnant. We don’t want to go anywhere.”
from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail, .
..Still, Fletcher has not yet been told no definitively. And Sundin at least acknowledges he is still wrestling with a final decision.
“I have some things to think about, some things to sort out,” he told Hockey Night interviewer Elliotte Friedman.
Then, in the Leaf dressing room, he faced another large media scrum.
“No matter what happens, I’ll always love Toronto and I’m going to love the Toronto Maple Leafs,” Sundin said. “It’s been home for the last 13 years and that’s never going to change.
“I hope people respect whatever decision is going to come out of this.”
Sundin spoke to the media at Saturday’s morning skate and admitted that interim GM Cliff Fletcher had asked him to waive his clause, allowing the club to pursue a trade.
‘‘The Leafs gave me a chance to think about it and all that but as I said my position hasn’t changed since the start of the year.
‘‘I have to do what feels right in my heart. I just don’t think I can go to another team if I don’t want to play for another team. That wouldn’t be right to myself. That’s how I feel right now.’‘
added 1:35pm, More on this from Paul Hunter ant the Toronto Star.
Cliff Fletcher is on 640am in Toronto and says he talked to Sundin’s agent today, J.P. Barry and mentioned he is just waiting for a response back from him.
He did say Mats has not waived his NTC and talk is pretty slow right now around the league. Fletcher has other issues to deal with and will try to work on those.
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